8/2/2014 – Driving Reigns

Wander about Deming and wonder: do people in small towns just pray and save, as churches and banks seem excessive for population.

Down at county courthouse, become intrigued at blaring rock music, BBQ aroma, and a park gazebo decked out in patriotic bunting. Interrupt a quartet of middle-aged Hispanic-Indian American men and am told it’s a “feed” put on by local churches to reward/benefit “First Responders”. They seem bemused by my camera, but inquire if MY background includes emergency work (the size and toughness of their handshakes has already settled that: but they choose to be polite). Mention my cousin’s years with fire department which wins me an invitation to lunch. Decline ruefully dem ribs DO smell good!


Deming/NM – “First Responders” – Music Makers


Deming/NM - "First Responders" - Cook Crew

Deming/NM – “First Responders” – Cook Crew








Deming/NM – Seamen’s Field House – Old Custom House

Continue walking about their Historic District before realizing some years back spent time in this neighborhood. At Historic Seamen’s Field House – Old Custom House, Amanda pauses from her nail polishing long enough to ask exclusion from my photo

Head downtown, only to find sought-after Mimbres Brewery is out-of-business. A couple large signs along sidewalks offer a “walking guide”… but many historic buildings now seem to have lost some flavor. AM touched by a small shrine along wall of St Ann’s Church… several small vases of fresh flowers grace its shelves and am reminded again how valuable religion can be to some people.


Drive I-10 over to Las Cruzes and pause in Brannigan Library: big and beautiful. Get a bit disoriented and end up in a hillside community of small, tightly-packed, suburban-like homes of Telshor.


Las Cruzes/NM – Rio Grande Theater


Las Cruzes/NM – “Mirror” Building

Finally, find my way back to North Main’s “Cultural District” (museums and theatres), but, except for a young man “sleeping it off” in a parklet, pedestrians seem in short supply. Delight in restored Rio Theatre embedded along narrow, tree-lined North Main Street, and find intriguing a small, undocumented “mirror-image” building which seems unused.




Am unclear how wall mural on Center for Spiritual Living fits in, and Stull building’s clever bas-relief remains a mystery.


Las Cruzes – Ctr for Spiritual Living – wall mural


Las Cruzes – Stull Building – bas relief







Continue, on I-10, into El Paso: somehow, missed the turn-off to lovely Mesilla… but, must catch it on my return trip. Road construction reintroduces “road jammers”: those power-hungry types who zoom to the front of merging traffic and force their way in… can only hope Dante has a special level for them (with lawyers, maybe?) in Hell. A brief monsoon forces me to take refuge in Motel 6 which turns into a Mack Senett comedy: erratic Wi-Fi connection, eminently jamable door, etc. DO feel safe though: a night filled with screaming siren sounds headed for Children’s Hospital will do that for you.


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